Perhaps this will be an overly and overtly charged blog; however, the two readings from Reinterpreting Russian History: Reading 860s-1860s present an excellent example of how historians can use the same sources but generate two very different narratives. In his article, “Interpreting the Mongol Yoke: The Ideology of Silence” Charles Halperin examines the variety of influences that the Mongol empire had on Russian society: its culture, politics, and economy. He challenges the popular notion that Mongol control only resulted in negative impacts on Russian culture.… Read the rest here
One of the more overlooked aspects of culture of post- Kievan Rus’ was the role of the minstrel. The minstrel, or skomorokhi, was a musician, actor, and all-around entertainer that operated in a wide variety of venues. These could range from small villages to large cities such as Novgorod. The minstrel sub population moved Northeast in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries into the region more known as Russia.
It is very surprising to note that Minstrels often played secular music and preformed secular entertainment. … Read the rest here